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Executive Records, Governor Spiro T. Agnew, 1967-1969
Volume 83, Page 512   View pdf image (33K)
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sioner of Correction and the Advisory Board of Correction. I think
that misunderstandings caused the problem that arose, and I think a
rather insensitive action on the part of the Commissioner may have
brought about some of the misunderstanding. I think he could have
handled the situation a little more tactfully. On the other hand, I
support fully, as I indicated yesterday, his right to make decisions af-
fecting his personnel. And I recognize that the Advisory Board is
nothing more than an Advisory Board to give advice, the value of
which must ultimately be determined by the Commissioner himself.
I feel after talking to the Advisory Board that it does not misconstrue
what it's there to do and that it only wants to have a chance to have
the advice that it offers seriously considered before a decision is made.
I think maybe the Commissioner acted a little impetuously, hastily,
on the advice. Maybe he didn't wait to receive as much of it as they
would have liked to give him. But the matter can be reconciled be-
tween the two groups, between the Commissioner and the group, I'm
certain. I've got full confidence in the Commissioner. I think the
group is a group that serves well and will be of great assistance to
him, and I'm going to do everything I can to make them work com-

Q. Do you still favor keeping an Advisory Board as well as a Com-
missioner of Corrections?

A. Yes indeed, I think it's a useful function and I don't think anyone
could ever charge an Advisory Board with the responsibility of the
failure of an administration, because it's not a policy making board
and only exists in an advisory capacity. It has no responsibility to
move into every area of corrections. It has only the responsibility to
offer such advice as it feels would assist the accountable department
head in administering his department. So I don't criticize the ad-
visory board because of failures of the past prison administration. I
think that Commissioner Cannon would be well advised to utilize the
members of the board who have been through and seen quite a bit
of correctional confusion, who give their opinions to him so that we
can avoid a repetition of some of these things, and I'm sure that's his

Q. Do you think there's a possibility of personality conflicts between
these two people?

A. There are always personality conflicts and most of these arise be-
cause of a lack of communication. I think that's part of the trouble
here, and I intend to be the catalyst to stimulate a free flow of infor-
mation between the Advisory Board and the Commissioner.


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Executive Records, Governor Spiro T. Agnew, 1967-1969
Volume 83, Page 512   View pdf image (33K)
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